Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty has sent a letter to the Environmental Protection Agency asking it to consider using Minnesota as a site for testing XcelPlus FlexTek E-85 conversion kits. (Earlier post.)
The Governor said he wants to offer tax breaks for low and moderate income families who convert their vehicles to run on ethanol. Minnesota Congressman James Oberstar (D-MN) is arranging for state leaders to meet with XcelPlus to discuss the conversion technology and bring results to the EPA.
We [Minnesota] are the largest ethanol producer. We’ve lead the nation in the ethanol issue. It would be a logical next step to lead the country in conversion.—Congressman James Oberstar
FlexTek, distributed by XcelPlus, is a Brazilian bi-fuel converter that utilizes its own standalone CPU to enable a vehicle’s fuel system to burn ethanol (E85), gasoline, or any blend of the two fuels.
The FlexTek converter integrates into the wiring of the vehicle injection system via connectors and modifies the injection instructions for use with high-ethanol blends. The system requires manual selection of fuel mode: one position is for 60% or more gasoline; the other for 60% or more ethanol. The system now works on cars with multi-port and sequential fuel injection systems.
To prepare the car for use of E85 and help protect against corrosion, XcelPlus recommends the use of their “E85 Engine Treatment and Fuel Treatment” before running on ethanol.
The system is not yet EPA-tested or certified, and although XcelPlus’s original stance was that it does not need to be, the company is proceeding with EPA testing.
In terms of fuel economy, XcelPlus claims that the reduction in fuel economy resulting from the use of E85 may be somewhat offset by the use of the E85 Engine Preparation Kit.